As I watched the original releases I found my satisfaction slowly decreasing as time went on, until by the end of the 3rd film, I was done with it. No real emotional connection. It felt like too much was wedged in that did not belong with the original source material.
This one had me in tears multiple times, and the ending hit like a ton of bricks, soooo much better. The characters felt like old friends.
Thank you so much for your efforts on this, it is the way the films should have been done.
This edit proves one thing above all others; The Hobbit was truly never meant to be a film trilogy. While an uneducated person may assume that since it is one book, it should be one movie, there is way too much content packed within those pages to fit into two and a half hours of film. This fan edit reimagines the trilogy as a series instead, giving us five, one hour long segments where the story is continuously focused on the true core of the original source material.
While this version isn't quite perfect, that can in no way be blamed on the editor. The Hobbit trilogy is fundamentally flawed and there are many roadblocks within the series that are just impossible to work around (ie, Bilbo being reduced to a side character in his own movie during BOTFA). That being said, Mr. Stromboli Bones does a fantastic job of doing everything he can to give us an idea of what an actually good version of this movie could have been.
One of the things I didn't anticipate going into this was just how much content was actually completely unnecessary. The entire warg chase is cut from between the Troll Hoard to arriving at Rivendell. I was surprised at just how little this impacted the story, and I found myself noticing just how many subplots felt like such a chore to get through upon previously watching these movies. And I will never be able to express my gratitude enough for not being forced to sit through any of the many pointless lake town sub-plots.
There were a couple things that were a bit tricky to get used to, but that's mostly due to being used to the original cut. The warg attack in the trees felt like it came out of nowhere, and ended just as quickly. But there is no easy way to avoid that without inserting the Azog subplot into the movie. And rest assured, that is one thing the trilogy did NOT need.
Overall, I think this edit just does an amazing job at illustrating all the many pointless and frustrating aspects of The Hobbit trilogy while simultaneously highlighting the amazing parts. There was so much potential within the Peter Jackson movie, and when you brush aside the grime and dirt, you discover an amazing film underneath. The Hobbit is an incredible story, and it's filled with amazing acting performances, breathtaking visuals, and poignant life messages. This edit reminded me what I loved about the story in the first place, and mainly causes me to lament what could have been.
If you are like me and enjoy doing a yearly LOTR marathon, but hate trying to get through The Hobbit, do yourself a favor and just watch this version instead.
The series is absolutely fantastic! I prefer watching most films in shorter sittings, so the episodic format is perfect, and that alone makes this my preferred viewing experience of The Hobbit! I gave it a 10/10 because I think I don't think it gets better considering the source material, but I still wouldn't say that every episode has an equally good narrative. While episodes 1 and 2 are absolutely perfect, episode 3 feels a bit strange because the story rushes through so much in a single episode. Episode 5 is also very good, but it does of course almost entirely consist of fighting. I was very surprised that it includes a lot of scenes from the extended edition, but they do work fairly well in the context. I highly recommend getting the version of the edit with the Arkenstone and Gandalf in the beginning of episode 5 to add some much needed non-combat-related drama to the episode.
As the saying goes, “Sometimes less is more.” So it is with this fun and exciting edit, so it is with this review.
While long the originals are, this one is not, and the better for it. It was only a few months ago that I watched Hobbit trilogy, first the edited versions, then the extended editions. The latter was after acquiring the Blu-rays for a great price, but I digress. Well-proportioned, this can be viewed in multiple sittings, without losing one's place.
Technically this edit is, in my estimation, flawless – visually and audibly. I enjoyed it as if it were a studio cut. The transitions are seamless, the cuts precise, the scenes well-placed. The story flows nicely, the narrative emended. In short, a triumph!
Having not (yet) seen all the other Hobbit edits from which this wonderful work was wrought, I’m guessing it’ll be an enjoyable rabbit hole.
To all the editors from whence this treasure has come, if this edit represents the sum of its parts, then well done!